The state police major who headed the three-week manhunt for two killers who escaped from a New York prison says the pair bushwhacked, tramped through swamps and put pepper in their boots to elude the army of searchers on their tail.

State Police Maj. Charles Guess told the Press-Republican of Plattsburgh (http://bit.ly/1KkzSt3 ) details of the search for David Sweat and Richard Matt, who escaped from the maximum-security Clinton Correctional Facility on June 6. Matt was killed by searchers on June 26 and Sweat was captured two days later.

The pair walked to a heavily wooded area west of the prison after a prison employee who was supposed to pick them up backed out.

Relying on information from Sweat, Guess said Matt panicked after their ride failed to show.

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Information from: Press-Republican, http://www.pressrepublican.com